You feel that the interview went exceptionally well. You had great rapport with the hiring manager. You both agreed that your qualifications, cultural fit requirements, and relevant performance-related accomplishments were a superb match for the role. Yet, unexpectedly, you received notice afterwards that the company was no longer interested in pursuing you for the opening.
You were confident that the job was yours to accept but, upon further reflection, there is a nagging feeling in a corner of your mind that the perceptible change in the interviewer’s manner at the very end of the talk may have been much more than the simple anomaly in their overall approach that you initially assigned to it. What might have happened to change the timbre of the engagement so quickly after everything before that point had gone so brilliantly?
A number of potential candidates and trusted clients I chat with tell me that many recruiters view interview preparation as little more than an afterthought. Indeed, many assign no purpose to it other than to announce what time the talk will begin and with whom it will be conducted. This crucial element of the process takes only a small amount of attention and effort, and neglecting it is a disservice to all involved.
Items ranging from extensive study of the corporate offering and the requirements of management, to something as basic as appropriate attire are all certainly essential. However, there is one very simple yet highly important facet of the undertaking that must be attended to after each step – let the individual know that you are very interested in moving things forward to the next stage.
A particular manager may have been very enamored with a seemingly perfect candidate but, after talking with them in greater detail, felt that their enthusiasm for the opening was not sufficient enough to warrant further discussions. This may not have actually been the case but, if those in the hiring post feel that they are dealing with someone who is not entirely committed and enthusiastic about working for them, things can stall rapidly. Conversely, on a number of occasions I have seen contenders win a role because they were deemed to be the person who had the most interest in it, even though many times I perceived them to be somewhat less qualified than others vying for the position.
It’s vital to remember that company executives want to be actively engaged and pursued by an applicant. A simple miscommunication may lead to you losing what may have been the best station of your career thus make certain to convey excitement and passion for the company and the open slot if it truly is of interest to you. Most importantly, let them know that you do indeed want the opportunity and will do whatever is necessary to succeed. This seemingly most simple of actions can have a tremendous impact and is an essential component of any interview.
Copyright 2007 by Dan McLaughlin. Use of this article is allowed provided it is unaltered and the original author's name and company URL are included.